Frequently Asked Questions Purchasing Card

Purchasing Card

Table of Contents




Is this an allowable P-Card purchase?

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How do I close my P-Card account?

  • Cardholders must complete the following steps to close their P-Card. Desroying the card alone will not close the card account.
  1. Complete the online dynamic form - Cardholder Change in Status Form
  2. Stop using the P-Card at least 10 business days before the desired date to close the card. This will allow for the final transactions to process through the bank and for coding and approvals to be completed.
  3. Destroy the card and email that the card has been shredded.
  4. Advise your approver where the P-Card records will be retained in accordance with University Policy.

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Who would I contact if my card is declined at a vendor checkout?

  • Contact Melisa Warner, Procurement Services, 615-898-2511,


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How long am I required to keep my P-Card receipts?

  • 5 years – not including the current fiscal year.
  • Keep all bank statements, original itemized receipts, invoices, support documents, and P-Card compliance review documentation.
  • Records must be retained in a location accessible to the university.  Electronic records must be stored on a university shared drive for access. Receipts that are available only through accessing a vendor site (ie.. Home Depot, Amazon, B&H ) is not considered record retention.

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Is a food form required before I make a Purchase with the P-Card?

  • Yes - Any P-Card food purchase (food, beverages, snacks, candy, etc.) must be pre-approved regardless of the vendor. The request is to be submitted using the steps below and received in the P-Card Compliance Office 5 days prior to the food purchase date.
    1. The Food Purchase Authorization should be completed and saved as a pdf. No cardholder or approver signatures are required on this form as the electronic signatures will be obtained on the Routing Form.
    2. Complete the Food Purchase Routing-PCard form and attach the pdf from the previous step to the form. This form will automatically route for approvals and then sent to the P-Card Compliance Office for processing.
    3. Once the request has been reviewed for adherence to the Food and Beverage Policy 661, a FPA# will be assigned to the food purchase request and emailed back to the cardholder indicating that the food purchase may be completed.
  • IMPORTANT – The purchase must be below $500 for the entire event. This total should include all types of food & beverage purchases for the event-regardless of the payment method.

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Do I need approval to make a purchase from a foreign vendor?

  • This purchase requires a determination of vendor tax status from the Business & Finance, Tax Compliance Office before the purchase is made.
  • Please contact Jim Woulfe for assistance. or email

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What do I do if my card is lost/stolen or fraudulent charges appear?

  • Contact the Truist Fraud Department, 1-866-495-5411
  • Notify the Business & Finance office of any action taken by Truist to resolve the issue by emailing Report if your card has been canceled or if a new card has been ordered. Also provide a list of transactions that were determined to be fraudulent.
  • Notify your approver.

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How do I handle items purchased and then given to an employee?

  • Because fringe benefits exceeding $100 per employee - per year, are taxable; any P-Card purchases that could be determined to be a fringe benefit for an employee will be handled as follows:
    • At the time of the Compliance review, a list of recipients, a description of the items purchased, and dollar value of the items will be requested.
    • The documentation will be forwarded to the Business and Finance Tax Compliance Office for review. 

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What happens if I lose my receipt or did not receive a receipt from the vendor?

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Can I use my P-Card for memberships and subscriptions?

  • YES - IF the criteria stated in Policy 660 is met, THEN original and renewal memberships and subscriptions may be purchased with the P-Card.
  • It is the responsibility of the department head to determine if memberships meet the critieria stated in Policy 660 before using univeristy funds for payment.
  • Refer to Policy 660 Membership and Subscriptions for the list of criteria to purchase individual memberships.

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Can I purchase office supplies with vendors other than Staples?

  • NO. Staples is only MTSU contracted office supply vendor. All employees must utilize this contract and using MT$ource is the best method for this purchase.
  • Exception: If a lower price is documented prior to purchase or if a product is unavailable at Staples, then it may be purchased with another vendor IF the documentation supporting the purchase is retained with the purchase receipt. (Documentation of Staples price vs. purchase price)

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I accidently made a personal purchase with my P-Card. What do I need to do?

  • Report the purchase to the P-Card Compliance Office: Haley Bunney at or Amy Kincaid at
  1. Complete the online P-Card Reimbursement Form which includes steps for reimbursement.
  2. Retain all original documentation in your P-Card file.

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Can I go off-campus for printing services?

  • All University printing jobs are to be produced by University Printing Services unless they are unable to produce the job.
  • All publications should be produced on campus when economically feasible.
  • For each P-Card printing purchase, retain with the purchase receipt the documentation supporting the use of off-campus printing. See Policy 154 Publications

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Can I purchase rentals on my P-Card?

  • NO. Rentals cannot be purchase using the P-Card.
  • Employees may not sign any contracts or agreements on behalf of the university.
  • Refer to Policy 600, Section III.

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What if I am charged sales tax on a P-Card purchase?

  • Contact the vendor and try to recover the taxes.
  • Complete the dynamci form Sales and Use Tax Exemption Request (7/1/23-6/30/27) form to request that the MTSU Sales Tax Excemption Ceritificate be sent to a specific vendor. This form can be found at Business Office Forms
  • If the vendor refuses to reimburse the tax charge, the cardholder is responsible to document all correspondence and provide a written explanation to retain with the receipt.
  • Refer to .P-Card Policy 632 (Section IV:G)

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How do I make a P-Card purchase at Sam’s Club?

  • If your purchase is to include food/beverages, be sure the Food Purchase Authorization has been submitted prior to the shopping date. See Food Forms topic above.
  • RSVP and pick up the Sam’s business membership card from Procurement.
  • Show the MTSU membership card at checkout to ensure that sales tax is not charged on the purchase.
  • Return the card to Procurement Services.

How do I make a P-Card purchase at Kroger?

  • If your P-Card purchase is to include food/beverages, the Food Purchase Authorization must be submitted prior to the shopping date. See Food Forms topic above.
  • Pick up the Kroger Sales Tax Exemption Card from the Accounting Services office, COPE 106.
  • Present the Tax Exempt card at the beginning of the Kroger checkout process to ensure that sales tax is not charged on the purchase.
  • Return the card to Accounting Services.

 Reminders for both Sam’s and Kroger P-Card Purchases

  • Employees must have their own university P-Card for payment. You are not allowed to give your P-Card to another person to use. ( ie.. no grad students, student officers, or employee other than the cardholder)
  • The P-Card cannot be used for purchases from a Foundation account or with funding held in an agency (08XXXX) account.
  • Retain the Food Purchase Authorization and itemized receipt in your P-Card file as all purchases will be part of the P-Card Compliance monthly review processes.

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What types of travel expenses can I purchase with my P-Card?

  1. Only conference registrations and airfare purchases are allowed on the P-Card.
  2. A completed TA, Chrome River Pre-Approval Detail Report,  or written authorization from the traveler’s approving authority must be obtained prior to completing the P-Card purchase. see Travel Authorization Request. (TA).
  3. Contact Gayla Wilson at  or Megan MeKee at    Or you may email with travel related questions.
  4. Refer to Policy 658 Travel.

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Updated by P-Card Compliance 10/10/23



Contact Information


Cope Administration Building,
Room #103
Middle Tennessee State University
Murfreesboro, TN 37132